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First woman elected to Valdosta City Council dies at 95

First woman elected to Valdosta City Council dies at 95
Posted at 4:50 PM, Jan 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-05 16:50:05-05

VALDOSTA, Ga. — The City of Valdosta announced on Wednesday that the first woman elected to Valdosta's City Council, Elizabeth (Bette) Bechtel, passed away on Dec. 23 at the age of 95.

Bette helped pave the way for women's role in local government and furthered the conversation on environmental preservation when she became the first woman elected to the Valdosta City Council in 1972, according to the city.

She served a total of six two-year terms, one of which as Mayor Pro-Tem. In keeping with her interest in environmental issues, she wrote and introduced Valdosta's first tree ordinance, which led to Valdosta being recognized as a "Tree City."

Bette continued her service to the Valdosta/Lowndes County area by serving sixteen years on the Greater Lowndes County Planning Commission. She also served as president of The Symphony Guild from 1999-2000, volunteered at the Langdale Hospice House, and served on the board of the Humane Society of Valdosta/Lowndes County, to name a few of the many roles she played in community affairs.

Elizabeth (Bette) Bechtel will forever be remembered throughout our history and hearts. The city of Valdosta thanks her for her service to our community.